Harbor Freight 3n1 Press
     
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Harbor Freight 3n1 Press

By: George “Kickstand” Pandoff


Doing u-joints / balljoints can be a pain to do when your on the trail with no level place to work.. There are a number of very expensive u-joint tools on the market to make changing u-joints easier. Not wanting to spend the money on one of these expensive presses I decided to give the Harbor Freight 3n'1 press a try..

U-joints


As a u-joint press it is a little on the sloppy side. With that said the tool is still very usefull when you don't have access to ideal working conditions..

Ball Joints


This tool really shined doing ball joints on the trail. During the last Easter Jeep Safari 03 a friend snapped his drivers side front wheel off. The u-joint, axle ears, and upper / lower ball joints were all shattered. Additionally, the lower ball joint recieving end was now oval and curved. Normally a ball joint can be "coaxed" in with a hammer and large socket. With the severe mishaping of the recieving end there was no way to coax the ball joint in. With the press we were able to get this round balljoint in to the oval hole cupped hole. It was not an easy job even with the u-joint press. It required two of us with feet against the Jeep holding on to the crescent wrench pulling in unison to press the ball joint in. As I stated earlier, there was no way we could have put the ball joint in while on the trail with out the press.

Final word


For anyone that needs to be really self sufficient on the trail this tool is a must have. A little on the sloppy side but effective none the less.

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